There has been an enormous discussion on whether Mormonism is a religious denomination, a sect, or a non-religious movement. This question lingers in every individual’s mind upon mention of Mormonism. This question is pertinent in American society today, following the recent political happenings that involve members of Mormonism. Recently, Mitt Romney, a subscriber of Mormonism, was selected as the Republican presidential candidate to race against Barrack Obama. Several people argue that Mormonism is a Christian denomination (Vanel, 2017). At the same time, the majority, with whom I agree, believe that Mormonism is not a denomination in Christianity since most of their beliefs and practices do not go hand in hand with Christian beliefs.
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Mormons believe that they are Christians due to their belief in Jesus Christ. However, Mormons are significantly different from Christians in that they allow other books in the Bible. Apart from the 66 books in the King James Bible version, the version used by Mormons integrates the Pearl of Great Price, the Doctrine of Covenant, and the Book of Mormons. The Book of Mormons is contentious in that it gives an account of the history of ancient American groups (Brooks, 2020). It discusses a family that moved to Jerusalem before it was destroyed and the New World emerged. The doctrine of Covenants gives an account of revelations that were made to Priesthood, while the Pearl of Great Price has significant material to the origin of Mormonism. This deviation makes Mormonism perceived as a sect rather than a Christian denomination.
Additionally, Mormons view other Christians differently, distancing themselves from other Christians. Until the 20th century, Mormons used to refer to other Christians as “gentiles,” which is an insult to them (Brooks, 2020). Due to the increased animosity between Mormons and other Christians, Mormons now refer to Christians as “friends of another faith” or “non-Mormons. Another non-Christian factor of the Mormons is their non-belief in the Trinity, a fundamental Christian belief. They believe that Jesus is simply the firstborn of God and is not coeternal and coequal of God and the Holy Spirit. Owing to these significant variations from the doctrines and beliefs of Christianity, we can infer that Mormons are not Christians and that they are simply a sect.
Brooks, J. (2020). Mormonism and white supremacy: American religion and the problem of racial innocence. Oxford University Press, USA.
Vanel, C. (2017). Community of Christ: An American Progressive Christianity, with Mormonism as an Option. Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, 50(3), 89-114.